Hiroshima: Before and After the Atomic Bombing

Later this month, Barack Obama will become the first U.S. president to visit Hiroshima, Japan, 71 years after the United States dropped the first atomic weapon used in warfare on the city in 1945, killing tens of thousands. President Obama plans to tour the site with Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, but will reportedly not be offering any apologies or revisiting the decision by the U.S. to drop the bomb. On my last visit to the National Archives, I found a number of pre-war and post-war images of Hiroshima, and have gathered them here, a stark reminder of what happened when a nuclear weapon was detonated over a densely-populated area.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Omar Torres / AFP / Getty

    Photos of the Earthquake in Mexico City

    On September 19, 2017, a magnitude 7.1 earthquake shook Mexico City, rattling skyscrapers and sending millions into the streets.

  • Stewart Tomlinson / U.S. Geological Survey

    A Photo Trip Through Yellowstone National Park

    Yellowstone, now 145 years old, was the first national park established in the world.

  • Scott Olson / Getty

    A Weekend of Protest in St. Louis

    On Friday, a judge in St. Louis found Jason Stockley, a white former St. Louis police officer, not guilty of first-degree murder in the death of a black man named Anthony Lamar Smith.

  • Edgard Garrido / Reuters

    Photos of the Week: 9/9–9/15

    Hurricanes Jose and Irma, an earthquake in Mexico, Cassini’s grand finale above Saturn, and much more

Join the Discussion